Homemade Wild Bird
Food Recipes

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Are you ready to mix up some homemade wild bird food? Using a variety of bird foods will attract a wider variety of wild birds to your bird feeders.

These recipes are easy to make, economical and many require no cooking. 



Many of these homemade wild bird food recipes will require rendered suet. Rendering suet removes all traces of meat. Rendered suet is less likely to turn rancid and melt when outside in temperatures over 70 degrees.

The process for rendering suet:

Put the suet into a pan and turn on low heat (overheated fat can catch fire). If possible use an electric skillet. If you are using your stove top it is best to use an over-sized pan.

After the suet melts, pour it through fine cheesecloth into a heatproof container. Then discard the pieces that did not melt. Allow the melted suet to re-harden, either in the fridge or on the counter top. 

The suet needs to be melted and hardened 2 -3 times before it is ready to use. If you don't do this, the suet will not cake properly.



A few of my favorite homemade wild bird food recipes.

Sweet Cherry Treat

  • 2 cups of rendered suet
  • 1 1/2 cups of chunky peanut butter
  • 1 cup of dried cherries
  • 1 cup of sunflower seed hearts
  • 1 cup of crushed graham crackers
  • 1 1/2 cups of oatmeal

In a large bowl, add the chunky peanut butter to the rendered suet while it is still warm. Once the peanut butter is melted, add the cherries and the sunflower seed hearts. Then stir in the crushed graham crackers and oatmeal. After all of the ingredients are thoroughly mixed, put the mixture into molds or on a cookie sheet to cool.

Berries Berries Berries

  • 3 cups of rendered suet
  • 1 1/2 cups of chunky peanut butter
  • 1 cup of mixed, dried berries. Strawberries, blueberries, cherries and cranberries.
  • 1 cup of sunflower seed hearts
  • 1 cup of oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup of corn muffin mix.

In a large bowl, add the chunky peanut butter to the rendered suet while it is still warm. Once the peanut butter is melted, add the dried berries and the sunflower seed hearts. Then stir in the oatmeal and corn muffin mix. After all of the ingredients are thoroughly mixed, put the mixture into molds or on a cookie sheet to cool.

Homemade Oriole bird food Recipe

  • 1 part sugar
  • 6 parts water

Bring the water to a boil and then add the sugar. Boil until the sugar has dissolved. 1 part sugar to 6 parts water means that if you boil 2 cups of water you will need 1/3 cup of sugar.

Let the mix cool before filling your feeder. Store any excess food in your refrigerator until ready to use. There is no need to add food coloring.

Hummingbird feeder recipe:

  • 1 part sugar
  • 4 parts water

First, bring the water to a boil and then slowly add the sugar. Let it boil for a few minutes, then remove from the burner to cool. Store any excess nectar in the refrigerator. Yes, it is that easy!

Wild Bird Shish kabob

Ingredients: apples, oranges, pears, grapes, prunes, dried fruit, berries, summer squash or any other fresh fruits that you have around your kitchen or garden.

Slice the larger items into manageable sizes and poke a hole in the center of each piece. Then tie a large knot in one end of a 3 to 4 foot piece of twine. Run the twine through your fruits and vegetables. Then simply hang your stringed treats over a tree branch and watch as your feathered friends feast on your new offering.

September Harvest

This is another homemade wild bird food recipe that I know you will enjoy. Here in New Hampshire September means apples. There are also many other fruits available. Many migratory birds that eat fruit will be tempted to linger at your feeders if you offer the following mix. Use a platform style feeder when offering this wild bird food mix.

  • 2 cups of dried, chopped apples (dried apples will not get moldy as fast)
  • 2 cups of raisins
  • 2 cups of chopped nuts (almonds, walnuts, or any nuts you have available)
  • 1 cup of chopped prunes
  • 1 cup of dried melon or squash seeds

Simply mix the ingredients together in a large bowl or bucket. Start by adding small amounts to your feeder and store the rest in a paper bag in a cool and dry location. Now your homemade wild bird food is ready to serve.

Peanut Butter Cakes

Wild Birds love peanut butter and suet. This recipe combines both. These birds treats are easy to make and a great project for kids.

You will need:

  • 1 cup of rendered suet
  • 1 cup of chunky peanut butter
  • 6 cups of cornmeal
  • 1 muffin tin with paper liners

Here is the process for rendering suet: Put the suet into a pan and turn on low heat (overheated fat can catch fire). If possible use an electric skillet. If you are using your stove top it is best to use an over-sized pan.

After the suet melts, pour it through fine cheesecloth into a heatproof container. Then discard the pieces that did not melt. Allow the melted suet to re-harden, either in the fridge or on the counter top. The suet needs to be melted and hardened 2 to 3 times before it is ready to use. If you do not do this, the suet will not cake properly.

While the suet is still warm, add the chunky peanut butter and stir until melted. Then stir in the cornmeal.

Spoon the mixture into the paper-lined muffin tins. Allow them to cool at room temperature or place them in the refrigerator. They can even be frozen until needed.

You can add any combination of sunflower seeds, raisins, chopped fruit or nuts to spice up your mixture of homemade wild bird food.

I hope you enjoyed these homemade wild bird food recipes.


Do you have a wild bird food recipe that you want to share?

If you have a wild bird food recipe that works well for you why not share it? Backyard birders are always looking for new and economical bird foods to attract wild birds to their feeders. We would love to hear from you!

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crunch, crunch, crunch, gulp! 
what you need: dried cranberries stale white bread asian rice crushed tortilla shell crushed croutons small plastic container knife first …

Homemade Bird Food Recipes From Our Readers 
Birds love this treat I make it all the time. In winter is when they love it the most. You Will Need: * A good size stick,break …

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Backyard Pinecone Bird Feeder

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup softened peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/4 cup black oil sunflowers
  • 1/4 cup millet or small seeds, 1/4 cup raw oatmeal
  • 1/4 cup chopped peanuts (optional if using crunchy peanut butter)
  • 1 whole apple, chopped

Mix together well. Tie twine or strong string to a few large pine or fir cones. Leave enough string or twine to tie to tree branch or other structure. Smear mixer into the crevices of the cones. Use remainder on outside of cones. Hang on a safe limb or branch and enjoy the backyard bird show!

Eggshell Suet for Bluebirds

by Nola Weber (Ambridge, Pa.)

  • 1 cup lard
  • 1 cup chunky peanut butter
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 2 cups yellow cornmeal
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup chicken scratch(I use cracked corn)
  • 1/3 cup washed, dried and crushed eggshells

Melt lard over low heat, Add peanut butter. Stir until melted. Add other ingredients and mix well.

I reuse store bought suet pans. Or you can line a baking pan with wax paper. Spread into pan and cut into squares.

Freeze for about one hour. Remove cakes and store in baggies in the freezer. Not need to that before serving.

Chicken scratch comes in 50 lb bags -- I find the cracked corn works. This year I have two bluebird couples coming to eat. But lots of other birds like this too.

Juicy Blast

by Se'aun Hill (Shwenksville P.A)

You'll need:

  • 2 peeled sliced oranges
  • vine of grapes
  • 1 sliced apple
  • kiwi (optional)
  • 3 strawberries
  • something to crush and mix with

Put the peeled sliced oranges in a bowl. If you used kiwi crush it up and put it in the bowl. Take the skin off the apple and cut the apple. Smash 2 out of the three strawberries. Put the third one in the bowl whole.

Take the grapes off the vines. Crush them if you want to. Put all the fruits in the same bowl and mix them together. Mix for 2-3 minutes, after that you done.

TRY IT! It's fun!

Easy Peanut Butter Snacks

by Tyler (Hope A.K)

  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup crisco
  • 1/2 cup bird seed

Melt peanut butter and crisco together and mix. Then stir in bird seed. Before it hardens put in a muffin tin liner. Once it hardens put in your feeder.

Gandyland Goo Cakes

by sandy (Lake Texoma)

Melt bag of miniature marshmallows, cup of lard, and small jar of chunky peanut butter over low heat. Stir in about 3 cups black oil sunflowers, and after thoroughly coating the seeds, add another 3 cups, plus fruit or nuts if desired. Press into molds and put in freezer for a couple of hours until they set firmly.

Attracts many types of birds!

We have red-bellied woodpeckers, downy woodpeckers, nuthatches, brown creeper, ruby-crowned kinglets, chickadees, cardinals, pine siskens and many other birds visiting this feeder just outside the window.

Textured Bird Trail Mix

by Maria (Los Angeles, CA, USA)

This is a really simple, healthy if not "outside the box" treat for wild birds, not to mention very economical!

I pour this into my stake and bowl feeders in addition to using traditional seed mixes in my tube feeders, and the birds (and squirrels) usually eat the entire mixture within the day!

INGREDIENTS:

  • WHOLE OATS (not the "instant" type) OR Multi-Grain HOT CEREAL mixture. Example: rye/barley/oats/wheat 
  • NOTES: one can purchase these very inexpensively at the local grocery store; usually sold in canisters.
  • RAW, SHELLED SUNFLOWER SEEDS (I sometimes use roasted, unsalted as well)
  • CORN MEAL
  • DRIED FRUIT (i.e. raisins, apricot, pineapple, cranberries)

**************************************************************

Simply use a food processor or coffee-bean grinder to lightly grind the seeds and grains, forming a powder with some seeds/grains remaining intact for texture. A LIGHT grind is best. I literally grind the seeds for 2 seconds, and the grain for the same amount of time, separately.

Put together in a storage container.

Add corn meal.

Chop dried food to bird bite-sized pieces and add to the mix.

**************************************************************

RATIO of ingredients:

Generally, here's the priority I set on the ingredient list, in terms of its quantity in the mixture. There is no distinct "formula".

  1. sunflower seeds
  2. whole grains
  3. corn meal and dried fruit

Ideally, the mix should have a high-fat ratio (i.e. sunflower seeds) and whole grains for a delicious, filling mix. Honestly, I wasn't sure the birds would like a "powder-like" texture at first, but they very quickly loved the taste!

Keep fresh water nearby at all times. The grains are filling and it's a dry mixture... :-)

Enjoy the bird visitors! 



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